In any workplace, conflicts are inevitable. Organizational and team leaders have to develop strategies and methods of managing potential issues likely to affect the working relationship (Raines, 2012). Conflicts of interests among the stakeholders would affect the working relationship and the quality of the outcome. The essay discusses a common problem that led to a conflict, a mistake and a complaint in the workplace.
Introduction to the Experience
When I was working as a manager at ski retail shop, I faced emerging challenges that threatened the working relationship. At the start of the season, business was not good because it did not snow much, and this hurt reservations. The upper management team put pressure on me to develop ways of reducing the cost of operations by keeping payrolls down. As a response, I had to cut the number of working hours for every employee. In response, some employees sought to take second jobs so that they meet their financial needs, while the management was happy that the company reduced payrolls. As the season progressed, I had to keep payrolls down to keep pleasing the management. Some employees left the organization since they faced tough economic times. It was a challenging time for me and the assistant manager, as well as the staff since they overworked to make up the difference. Towards the end, the situation led to a conflict, a complaint, and a mistake, requiring solutions.
Explanation of Situations
A conflict happened during the high season when one family returned ski rental equipment backstage. They had rented the equipment through a third-party and I was not familiar with the arrangement. With the arrangement, the agreement allowed the clients to use the equipment for about 4 to 5 days. It means that they can take a break one day and would be allowed to pay for 4 days. Since I was not aware of the situation, there was a conflict with the clients by compelling them to pay for the days. I was only interested in making money during spring break to make up for the low income during the low season. The conflict is that the customers had an agreement, which I did not understand and did not listen to their views, leading to a serious conflict that constrained the working relationship.
The mistake made in this context was the lack of noting this agreement on paperwork. Because the demand was high during the season, I was interested in generating more income, forgetting that customers are always right. It was a mistake since I was not interested to hear them out and the company was likely to lose the customers due to the disagreement. The attitude that the business wanted to make generate income possible without considering the welfare of the customers was wrong. The mistake led to a complaint to the top management. I was summoned and I admitted that I was on the wrong. For any business, customers are always right. The management should do all it can to serve them right by solving their problems. By admitting the mistake, the management can conclude that I am not competent to serve as a manager.
Compare and Contrast Process Solutions
Regarding the conflict with the customers, the best process that would have solved the issue was to hear customer complaints, reviewing the agreement and determining a solution. Although the process looks simple, it could improve the relationship with the customers (Johnson & Keddy, 2010). Regarding the mistake, the process involves documenting all the agreements and any special arrangements with the customers. Each party should have a copy of the agreement and consent to it after understanding all clauses and information. Lastly, the process of solving the complaint could have involved inviting the third party to discuss the agreement and engage other parties involved to deliberate on the issue before taking it to upper management.
The first alternative to solving the conflict was to listen to the customers and review the agreement. The option could have sought the problem and a review of the special arrangement to avoid unnecessary conflicts and running the relationship with the customers (Ward, 2013). Another option of solving the mistake was to avoid using third-parties and deal directly with the customers. However, this would hinder market access since third-parties promote the company to potential customers. Lastly, the manager should have invited supervisors and third-parties to deliberate on the special agreement and solve the issues instead of taking it to the management (Ward, 2013). Top management should be involved in complex issues, not petty matters. Importantly, listening to the views of the customers could provide a gateway to managing conflicts.
Lastly, the problems should be handled differently. It is because each problem has unique impacts on the outcome and involves different stakeholders. For example, the mistake was individual and could not be solved using the same procedure for solving the conflict (Ward, 2013). The mistake could lead to loss of customers while losing a single manager could not have a detrimental effect on organizational performance. Therefore, the application of different procedures is crucial since each process has an impact on organizational performance.
Workplaces often encounter various challenges and conflicts that affect the working relationship among stakeholders. The mistake, in this case, was poor paperwork that raised a complaint to upper management. The conflict between the manager and the customers constrains the relationship. When solving an issue, it is necessary to involve stakeholders, review the agreement and reach a consensus. It is important to keep in mind that customers are always right and managers should do everything to keep them happy.
Johnson, C., & Keddy, J. (2010). Managing conflict at work: Understanding and resolving conflict for productive working relationships. New York: Sage.
Raines, S. (2012). Conflict management for managers: Resolving workplace, client and policy disputes. London: Sage.
Ward, M. (2013). Fire officer: Principles and practice, 3rd edition. New York: Jones & Bartlett.
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Conflict in the Workplace: Managerial Mistakes and Complaints - Essay Sample. (2023, Mar 21). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/conflict-in-the-workplace-managerial-mistakes-and-complaints-essay-sample
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